Diet for dog with GERD (Acid Reflux)
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Thread: Diet for dog with GERD (Acid Reflux)

  1. #1
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    Diet for dog with GERD (Acid Reflux)

    Hi all,

    I have a 3 year old border collie x with digestive problems. He's had a history of acute episodes of diarrhea, and recently was diagnosed with GERD/Acid reflux. I'd like to know if anyone else is dealing this acid reflux specifically with their dog, and what foods they have had success with.

    We had him on Blue Buffalo for awhile, and he did great for about a year. A couple of months ago he started having episodes of vomiting bile/mucous. They only happened at night, about 3-6 hours after eating. He would pace around very agitated, drool heavily (puddles on the floor), vomit liquid, and cry and whine. This would usually last for about 2-3 hours, and the next day he was usually a little lethargic. We took him to the vet and ruled out poisoning, megaesophagus, and blockages (xrays of both chest and abdomen). We also did blood work and found nothing abnormal. The vet concluded by process of elimination that this is likely acid reflux disease.

    For medications, we've tried pepcid, prilosec, carafate, and active manuka honey. They only thing that has kept these episodes away since they started a couple months ago is the prilosec once every morning. He is still currently taking this med, but I would like to regulate this problem with diet and natural remedies if possible.

    Most of what I have read recommends a food "low in fat and protein," and feeding in small frequent meals. However, as far as foods go Blue was already low in fat and protein. My hunch is that this "recommendation" is based off of what works for HUMANS. I decided to try grain free. He is currently on Natural Balance LID fish/potato (which I am not happy with, as the main ingredient is potato, not fish, and my dog is already on the skinny side). We tried taking him off the prilosec on this food and he had another episode within a week.

    I'm going to try wellness CORE reduced fat next, and if it doesn't work I think we're going to have to see a GI specialist ($$$). I appreciate any advice!
    Last edited by Aquablazes; 01-02-2010 at 05:41 PM.

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  3. #2
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    Re: Diet for dog with GERD (Acid Reflux)

    Add a probiotic or a digestive enzyme to aide in digestion and you should be able to feed any low fiber food (not more than 3% on the nutrition label) low fat food. Grease is the main component that could aggravate gerd. Small meals spred thru the day will also help.
    Last edited by Dog_Shrink; 01-02-2010 at 05:36 PM.

  4. #3
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    Re: Diet for dog with GERD (Acid Reflux)

    Has your vet ruled out inflammatory bowel disease? My 15-year-old maltipoo was finally diagnosed through endoscopy (yes, $$$$) after months of the vets assuming he had some sort of esophageal problem. He didn't even have diarrhea at that time, in fact his stools were perfect. It started with a lot of regurgitation (passive) and gradual weight loss. Later it progressed to vomiting (active), and still later diarrhea, which is mostly what we're dealing with now. But he still has a lot of GERD issues which are probably being made worse by the prednisone he's on (weakens muscles, including esophageal sphincter).

    I wish I had some good diet advice for you, but unfortunately we have been all over the world and back on that, and nothing much has helped. He was on high-quality grain free raw food when he got sick, and that's what made his stools the best. He hates everything else. Now he's on Stella & Chewey's, which is dehydrated raw and supposedly pathogen-safe (not normally something I worry about, but things change when there are immunosuppressants involved). You might try active manuka honey, there seems to be a lot of anecdotal support for that with GERD, and most dogs like the taste. I just started it again this morning because I didn't really give it a fair shot the first time, we had so many issues and medications going on. My dog isn't actually crazy about it but I just press it between his teeth and he doesn't have much choice as it's not easy to spit out. Might help a bit with the calories as well. Make sure it's active manuka honey, though, not just the regular stuff. And get a UMF factor of 15-18. The numbers go a lot higher but apparently there is such a thing as too strong. You might also try a product called Seacure, which is available online.

  5. #4
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    Re: Diet for dog with GERD (Acid Reflux)

    Oh! I can't believe I forgot to mention chia seed. Yup, just like the stuff used for chia pets. Besides being a really amazing superfood, it is great for acid reflux. You can use the seeds dry, but for your dog, it would be better to soak the seeds to form a gel. Refrigerate so it's nice and cool. If he won't lap it up, just get a syringe and squirt it between his teeth. It's pretty flavorless so he shouldn't object. Especially good for a dog who is having vomiting and diarrhea, as it's hydrophilic and helps prevent dehydration.

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